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Put a Freeze on Winter Fires

By admin Published December 15, 2016


A lit red candle in focus with blurred candles in the background.

It’s fun to decorate for the holidays during winter, but those holiday decorations can increase your risk for a home fire. As you deck the halls this season, be fire aware and fire smart.

To learn about winter fire hazards and ways to prevent them, read these winter fire safety tips:


  • Read the manufacturer’s instructions for the correct number of light strands to connect
  • Throw away light strands with frayed or pinched wires
  • Turn off your holiday lights before going to bed or leaving your home
  • Keep candles at least three feet away from anything that burns
  • Consider using battery-operated flameless candles, which can look, smell, and feel like real candles
  • Make sure your tree is at least three feet away from heat sources like fireplaces, radiators, space heaters, candles, or heat vents
  • Make sure your tree does not block exits
  • Water your Christmas tree every day – a dry tree is dangerous because it can catch fire easily
  • Get rid of your tree after Christmas or when it is dry – Take a minute to watch this video which shows the difference between a dry tree and well watered tree
  • Check with your local community to find a tree recycling program
  • Bring outdoor electrical lights inside after the holidays to prevent hazards and make them last longer

The risk of having a home fire increases during the winter months: December, January and February – but if you take the precautions listed above, you will significantly reduce the chance of a fire in your home this winter.

For more holiday safety information, visit USFA’s Holiday safety page.